Sunday, January 1, 2012

Free Rider

We drove up to Edmonton on Dec 30 for a family function at Joe's sister Mary's place.  But our first stop in the city was at the Glenrose Rehabilitation Centre.

On October 29/11, my nephew Tedman missed.  Ted's sport of choice is "extreme mountain biking" - I'm not sure if that's what he calls it, but that's what I call it.  He and some friends have a goal of jumping their bikes 150 feet using strictly gravity and pedal power.  They have been working their way to this goal.  Ted apparently holds the world record now, but the 150 foot jump would be extremely difficult for anyone else to beat.  If they can set it to start with.  And Ted missed.  He "landed" in hospital with a shattered left femur, broken shoulder bones, cracked sternum and serious head injury.  This is a video of what they do.

Two months later, he is making a good recovery and his prognosis is very good.  Nothing that we can do other than visit and encourage his recovery.  So naturally I made a quilt.  I called it Free Rider.  It is the same pattern as Skulduggery that I made last year.  Somehow it seems appropriate.
So here is the rant: I can't leave Ted's story without making a few comments.  I refuse to call it an "accident".  This was not an "accident" - Ted chose to do this and he knew, or should have known, what the potential consequences would be.  Fortunately - he was wearing top of the line protective gear, otherwise we would have been attending a funeral, not visiting him in hospital.  Still, if this was a kid unknown to me, I'd be the grumpy old tax payer incensed that  my tax money would be going toward paying for EMS support, air ambulance ride to hospital, hospital and  medical care, and therapy to mend a kid that was dumb enough to do this and who will likely do it again. 

On the other hand, if people didn't take chances, all the great accomplishments that are made would not be made.  Taking risks is how astronauts got to the moon, how Europeans "discovered" America, how innovations are turned into wealth generating industries, etc.  People take risks - some people take more risk and they don't think about the downside.  When we saw Ted on Saturday - he was still determined to do this jump and simply jokes about being dead.  At this point the most important thing for him is to do this jump and succeed.  Maybe when he's had a bit more time to recover, he'll change his view, but somehow, I don't think so.  All we can hope is that he gets the best insurance he can find and puts all the possible safety measures in place.

So Ted, if you ever read this, I get that you want to do this - almost have to do it - but I don't like it.  And we love you anyway.


Here is Marjorie with Hobo Hieroglyphics.  She was very happy with it. 

We drove home on Saturday, Dec 31.  It was a beautiful sunny day, but very windy in Edmonton and on the highway heading south.  The wind died down about half way home.  (It was about a 3.5 hour drive from our starting point to home.) I took this pix from the car window to show the snow from the fields being blown across the highway by the wind.


1 comment:

  1. Best wishes for a wonderful 2012!

    I agree with you about taking risks. I know a man who liked to take risks, went abseiling with no protective gear and will be in a wheelchair for the rest of his life. He was very active, loved folk dancing.....can't dance now. His attitude was "life is full of risks"! Let's hope your nephew continues on his recovery.